CHENNAI: Theatre group Crea- Shakthi’s ‘Spotlight’ initiative took audiences to the world of author Ruskin Bond and the figments of his imagination, on Saturday. The group’s latest production titled ‘Bonding with Ruskin, Volume 1’, comprised some of the short stories penned by the renowned author. As the group staged the meticulously chosen short stories of the author, for the second edition of the initiative, the group has got exclusive rights from Penguin books to perform some of the best from the author’s trove.
The performance saw the coming together of acting, immense stage presence of the actors, vocal music and instruments — all blended seamlessly. Some of the short stories that came alive in the form of plays through the theatrical performances were ‘The Eyes Have It’, ‘Tribute to a Dead Friend’, ‘Night Train at Deoli’, ‘Suzanna’s Seven Husbands’, ‘Face at the Dark’, ‘The Fight’ and ‘Hanging at the Mango Tope’.
On a fascinating journey into Ruskin’s world, one could see his penchant for the hills closely knit with the plot, just as the author penned them with a child-like innocence. His stories were about real-life characters leading ordinary lives, but narrated extraordinary tales, with vivid visualisation through words. Replete with witty dialogues, the highlights were the performances by the cast, the blend of hindustani music and lighting. Dushyanth Gunashekhar, creative head, Crea-Shakthi said, “Ruskin Bond’s stories are very popular for not being moralistic and everyone can relate to them. Known to be the identity of an Indian English speaking population, when you talk about Indian English writers and stories, Ruskin Bond is right up there.”
He added, “We felt that his works have not been portrayed enough on stage, when compared to films. What we used was devised theatre, which is creating an entire script from a plain text. We felt that there is a lot of music and drama in his stories. We wanted to explore that through this production. Moreover, this is something that everyone has grown up with.”